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ON STAGE

Kate Bush

Crossover Prog


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Kate Bush On Stage album cover
2.70 | 15 ratings | 2 reviews | 20% 5 stars

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 1979

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Them Heavy People (4:02)
2. Don't Push Your Foot On The Heartbrake (4:00)
3. James And The Cold Gun (6:32)
4. L'Amour Looks Something Like You (2:35)

Total Time 17:09

Line-up / Musicians

- Kate Bush / Vocals, Piano
- Ben Barson / Synth, Acoustic Guitar
- Brian Bath / Electric Guitar, Mandolin, Vocal Harmonies
- Paddy Bush / Mandolin, Vocal Harmonies, Additional Instrumentation
- Glenys Groves / Backing Vocals
- Preston Heyman / Drums, Percussion
- Kevin McAlea / Piano, Keyboards, Saxophone, 12 String Guitar
- Alan Murphy / Electric Guitar, Whistle
- Del Palmer / Bass
- Liz Pearson / Backing Vocals

Releases information

EP EMI 2991 (1979)

Thanks to dr4wazo for the addition
and to Joolz for the last updates
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KATE BUSH On Stage ratings distribution


2.70
(15 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
20%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(27%)
27%
Good, but non-essential (33%)
33%
Collectors/fans only (13%)
13%
Poor. Only for completionists (7%)
7%

KATE BUSH On Stage reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars "that's all gone now..."

That's how Kate described her early work after completing "The Tour of Life." After a short break in the Summer of 1979, Kate and Jon Kelly started working on the tapes for the release of a four song EP in September. But she was not particularly excited about revisiting the Tour project and was already stoked about recording Never For Ever, for which she intended a very different sound. In an early example of Kate rewriting her own history, she is reported to have been displeased with the sound of the tour tapes and re-recorded some of the material on this EP, ironically to give it a more "live" sound.

So the four tracks presented here, while classic Bush, are some combination of live and studio work hopelessly lacking in giving the listener any real taste of the 2 hour long Tour of Life shows. I'm not sure why they bothered other than for the financial appeasement of the label. The Hammersmith video would be out a bit later and at 50 minutes would still be a half-finished painting, but at least there you get the visual element as well, and far superior to this. I don't believe this EP has been released on CD, thus it is at best a collector's item for vinyl hounds. Today's listeners would be better served by finding a good copy of the Hammersmith video for a chance to experience The Tour of Life. Hopefully the powers that be will one day remove their heads and re-release the full Tour of Life in a high quality CD/DVD package...all 2 hours of it. "On Stage" is for hard core fans only.

Review by DangHeck
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars First of all, a shoutout is most certainly due to user Finnforest, for the (to me here and now) twelve year old review of this EP. Really well written context for this can be found therein. I, for one, was utterly unaware of this. Despite what they say, it does appear this is a true-blue live recording, from May 1979 at the Hammersmith Odeon. But some have suggested that there was some kind of later (likely very purposeful) studio f*ckery on the finished tracks. Who's to say? Aside from Lionheart's "Don't Push Your Foot on the Heartbrake", the material on this album was originally released via her debut LP, The Kick Inside. [My personal experience with her live material is pretty much solely represented by her famed Christmas special, which premiered later that same year. If anyone is unfamiliar, there are some interesting commentaries written in recent about that performance, in all of its peculiarity. I'm sure they would make for a more than decent viewing guide, too.]

The EP begins with "Them Heavy People", one of her best Pop songs of her early works. For those somehow unfamiliar, this is one of a few tracks that is, as I've put it, faux-Reggae (successfully, I might add). Pretty great sound here, with much-necessary backing vocals. As if we didn't know it already, Kate is of course an insanely talented vocalist. The guitars at the end are soft and lovely. Next is the aforementioned Lionheart track, "Don't Push Your Foot on the Heartbrake". According to the credits for the EP, it is a full live band, as it sounds. This is the first time in her discography that I'm seeing the feature of one of her career go-tos, drummer Preston Heyman. For a live performance, pretty decent sound and offering a slightly different approach than what we get on the studio version. Specifically, it's slightly faster, slightly heavier and the backing vocals provide something pretty interesting that isn't on that original version. Even so, I'd take the original.

Onto our second side, we have the harder Rock of "James and the Cold Gun" and, really, the guitars here sound pretty awesome, either Brian Bath or Alan Murphy. Also a tad heavier than the original. But in that, I'll take the cleaner sound of the original. The even slower, super feeling approach of the final instrumental section is actually a lot more impactful than on The Kick Inside, so that's a mark in its favor, for sure! Honestly, super cool guitar solo here, too. The softest of the bunch by a landslide [did I use this analogy properly? haha] is our final track, "L'Amour Looks Something Like You". And this version, unlike the two tracks that precede it, is actually slower than the original studio recording. Kate sounds great, but there's really nothing that it offers that the original didn't already have.

True Rate: 3.5/5.0

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